Shout! Studios, Toei Animation Team on ‘Digimon Adventure 02 The Beginning’ Home Entertainment Release Plans

Shout! Studios and celebrated anime studio Toei Animation Inc. on Jan. 31 announced a new home entertainment distribution deal for Digimon Adventure 02 The Beginning, the 2023 feature film based on the original TV sequel series from the globally popular Digimon anime franchise, which marks its 25th anniversary this year.

The multiyear partnership provides Shout! Studios with North American home entertainment distribution rights to the film for cross-platform releases in the United States and Canada, including all packaged-media and electronic sellthrough digital rights.

Shout! says it plans a strategic rollout of the film across multiple entertainment platforms in 2024. 

“We are delighted by this new opportunity with Toei Animation,” said Melissa Boag, Shout! Studios EVP of kids and family entertainment. “Over the years, we enjoyed tremendous success with the ‘Digimon Adventure tri.’ film series and Digimon Adventure: Last Evolution Kizuna. We look forward to presenting Digimon Adventure 02 The Beginning to anime fans and families through home entertainment very soon.”

Masayuki Endo, president and CEO of Toei Animation, added that “today’s news is one of many exciting things planned during 2024 as part of Toei Animation’s year-long celebration of the 25th anniversary of Digimon.”

Digimon Adventure 02 The Beginning enjoyed a two-day U.S. theatrical release in November by Toei Animation and Fathom Events. Based on the TV sequel series “Digimon Adventure 02” and its new cast of children that aired in 2000, the movie is a contemporary continuation of the series, with the DigiDestined children now 20-year-old young adults. The film was directed by Tomohisa Taguchi from a script by Akatsuki Yamatoya, with production by Toei Animation.

The home entertainment release features an English dub produced by Toei Animation specifically for the U.S. theatrical run. The English voice cast includes Brian Donovan, who voiced the character Daisuke Motomiya in the TV series, along with Jeannie Tirado, Bryce Papenbrook, Tara Sands, Johnny Yong Bosch, and Derek Stephen Prince.

The film is set in 2012, 10 years since the adventure in the Digital World. Daisuke Motomiya is now 20, and he and the rest of the DigiDestined seem to be changing bit by bit in terms of appearance and lifestyle. Then, one day, a giant Digitama suddenly appears in the sky over Tokyo Tower. Daisuke and the others encounter a mysterious young man named Lui Ohwada, who informs them that he’s the first-ever DigiDestined in the world.

Anime Film ‘Blue Giant’ Due on Blu-ray Disc, Digital Platforms on April 30

The acclaimed anime film Blue Giant will be released April 30 on Blu-ray Disc and all major digital platforms from GKIDS, with distribution from Shout! Studios.

Bonus features include a Q&A with Grammy Award-winning jazz pianist Hiromi Uehara, as well as trailers and teasers. Advance orders for Blue Giant may be made now from GKIDS.com, ShoutFactory.com, Amazon.com, and Apple.

Blue Giant, directed by Yuzuru Tachikawa (Mob Psycho 100, Death Parade), is based on the award-winning manga by Shinichi Ishizuka. The film features a jazz soundtrack composed by Uehara and performances by drummer Shun Ishikawa, of Millennium Parade, and saxophonist Tomoaki Baba.

In the film, Dai Miyamoto’s life changes when he discovers jazz. He picks up a tenor saxophone and practices every day. After leaving his hometown Sendai, he pursues a music career in Tokyo with help from his friend Shunji. One day, Dai plays passionately from the heart and convinces talented pianist Yukinori to start a band together. Along with Shunji, a beginner drummer, they form the three-piece band JASS. With each live performance, they get closer and closer to their dream of playing at So Blue, the most famous jazz club in Japan, in hopes of forever changing the world of jazz.

Animated ‘Canterville Ghost’ Coming to DVD Feb. 13

Shout! Studios has announced a Feb. 13 DVD release date for the new animated feature The Canterville Ghost, which is based on a humorous short story by Oscar Wilde.

 The independent film distributor had previously announced a Dec. 5 digital release date for the film, available for either rent or purchase on all major entertainment platforms.

The Canterville Ghost tells the story of a modern American family that moves to their recently purchased country home, Canterville Chase in England, only to find it is haunted by a ghost. Sir Simon de Canterville (Stephen Fry) has been haunting the grounds of Canterville Chase successfully for over 300 years, but he meets his match, Virginia Otis (Emily Carey), when he tries to scare out the new arrivals.

Directed by Kim Burdon (Stressed Eric) and co-directed by Robert Chandler (The Amazing Maurice), The Canterville Ghost‘s voice cast also includes Hugh Laurie, Freddie Highmore, Emily Carey, David Harewood, Meera Syal, Miranda Hart, Toby Jones and Imelda Staunton.

Fourth Boxed Set of Shaw Brothers Kung Fu Films Due on Blu-ray Disc Dec. 19

Shout! Studios on Dec. 19 will release on Blu-ray Disc its fourth installment of martial arts films from the Shaw Brothers, consisting of 12 films released between 1980 and 1984.

Shaw Brothers Classics Vol. 4 includes Rebel Intruders, Two Champions of Shaolin, Legend of the Fox, Black Lizard, House of Traps, Masked Avengers, Sword Stained with Royal Blood, Five Element Ninjas, Shaolin Prince, Shaolin Intruders, Holy Flame of the Martial World, and Opium & The Kung Fu Master​. Many of these films have never before been available on Blu-ray Disc.

The collection includes a variety of new bonus features, including new interviews with actors Chu Ke and Lung Tien-Hsiang, a new interview with author Leon Hunt, new audio commentaries with film historian Brian Bankston and author David West, and a new interview with Asian history academic Professor Lars Laamann. Advance orders may now be placed at ShoutStudios.com.

Shaw Brothers Studios was once the largest film production company in Hong Kong. The studio was founded in 1925 as the Tianyi Film Co. by brothers Runje, Runme, and Runde Shaw, and based in Shanghai. The three brothers also established a film distribution base in Singapore, known as the Shaw Organisation. By 1958, the companies had evolved into Shaw Brothers Studios, which a few years later set up what was once the largest privately owned studio in the world, Movietown.

The company went on to release more than 1,000 films and is credited with popularizing the kung fu genre. The Shaw Brothers’ most famous films include 1963’s The Love Eterne, The One-Armed Swordsman (1967) and Five Deadly Venoms (1978).

In 1987, the company suspended film production to focus on television through its subsidiary TVB. Film production resumed in 2009, but two years later the studio was reorganized into the Clear Water Bay Land Company Ltd. and its film production business was taken over by other Shaw conglomerate companies.

Shout! Studios to Release ‘The Canterville Ghost’ Digitally on Dec. 5

Shout! Studios on Dec. 5 will debut the new animated feature The Canterville Ghost for digital purchase and rent in North America only.

The Canterville Ghost, based on a humorous short story by Oscar Wilde, is an animated family feature that tells the story of a modern American family that moves to their recently purchased country home, Canterville Chase in England, only to find it is haunted by a ghost. Sir Simon de Canterville (Stephen Fry) has been haunting the grounds of Canterville Chase successfully for over 300 years, but he meets his match, Virginia Otis (Emily Carey) when he tries to scare out the new arrivals.

Directed by Kim Burdon (Stressed Eric) and co-directed by Robert Chandler (The Amazing Maurice), The Canterville Ghost‘s voice cast also includes Hugh Laurie, Freddie Highmore, Emily Carey, David Harewood, Meera Syal, Miranda Hart, Toby Jones and Imelda Staunton.

 

Oliver Stone’s ‘JFK’ Coming to 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc on Dec. 19 from Shout! Studios

Shout! Studios on Dec. 19 will release a special collector’s edition of Oliver Stone’s acclaimed and controversial JFK on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray and regular Blu-ray Disc, under the indie film distributor’s Shout! Select brand.

JFK, released theatrically in 1991, examines the Nov. 22, 1963 assassination of President John F. Kennedy from the perspective of New Orleans district attorney Jim Garrison, who came to believe there was a conspiracy to assassinate Kennedy and that Lee Harvey Oswald did not act alone.

The film was nominated for eight Academy Awards and won two, for Best Film Editing and Best Cinematography.

JFK boasts a star-studded cast, with Kevin Costner (Dances With Wolves), Sissy Spacek (Carrie), Joe Pesci (Goodfellas), Tommy Lee Jones (No Country for Old Men), Kevin Bacon (Mystic River), Laurie Metcalf (The Conners), Gary Oldman (The Dark Night), Jack Lemmon (The Apartment), Donald Sutherland (Invasion of the Body Snatchers), Walter Matthau (A New Leaf) and more.

The set comes loaded with special features, including 4K UDH scans of the original negative; audio commentary from the director, producer, and co-writer; deleted and extended scenes; and more. Additionally, fans who pre-order the film from ShoutFactory.com will receive an exclusive 18×24 rolled poster featuring the original theatrical artwork, available while supplies last.

Shout! to Give ‘Point Break’ the 4K UHD Blu-ray Treatment on Dec. 5

Shout! Studios is releasing the 1991 actioner Point Break, about a group of bank-robbing surfers, on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc Dec. 5.

The film, issued under the Shout! Select banner, comes to 4K from a new master restored from a 2023 4K scan of the interpositive in Dolby Vision. The combo pack will include the film on both a 4K disc and a regular Blu-ray disc.

Point Break follows rookie FBI agent Johnny Utah (Keanu Reeves), who is learning to ride the waves in an attempt to infiltrate a group of extreme surfers believed to be the bank robbers known as the Ex-Presidents because of the masks they wear while holding up banks. The film co-stars Patrick Swayze as charismatic thrill seeker Bodhi.

Point Break was directed by Kathryn Bigelow, who would go on to win a Best Director Oscar in 2009 for The Hurt Locker

The regular Blu-ray included in the combo pack will include additional scenes, four featurettes and the film’s theatrical trailer. More extras will be announced at a later date.

Consumers who order Point Break collector’s edition from ShoutFactory.com will receive an exclusive 18×24 rolled poster featuring the original theatrical artwork, available while supplies last.

 

Shout! to Issue All Seven ‘Police Academy’ Films in Blu-ray Disc Boxed Set

Shout! Studios is packaging all seven of the iconic “Police Academy” films into a Blu-ray Disc boxed set that will be released Nov. 21 as The Police Academy Collection.

The films were released between 1984 and 1994 and have been packaged together in a five-disc set. Included are the original Police Academy, Police Academy 2: Their First Assignment, Police Academy 3: Back in Training, Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol, Police Academy 5: Assignment Miami Beach, Police Academy 6: City Under Siege and Police Academy: Mission to Moscow.

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The franchise’s premise is laid out in the first film, with the mayor announcing a new policy requiring the police department to accept all willing recruits. Despite their eccentricities, a group of misfit recruits attempt to prove themselves capable of being police officers. Steve Guttenberg stars in the first four films as Carey Mahoney, a repeat offender who is forced to join the Police Academy as punishment. 

The release boasts new 2K scans of the interpositives, and various bonus features, including commentaries, featurettes and interviews.

Shout! Sets Nov. 3 Digital Release Date for ‘The Kill Room,’ With Uma Thurman and Samuel L. Jackson

Shout! Studios, in collaboration with Yale Entertainment, will release The Kill Room on Nov. 3 for digital purchase and rental.

The new comedy-thriller marks the first time stars Samuel L. Jackson and Uma Thurman have teamed up since 1994’s Pulp Fiction.

Directed by Nicol Paone and written by Jonathan Jacobson, The Kill Room follows an art dealer (Thurman) who teams with a hitman (Joe Manganiello) and his boss (Jackson) for a money-laundering scheme that winds up turning the hitman into an overnight avant-garde sensation, forcing the dealer to play the art world against the underworld. The cast also includes Debi Mazar, Dree Hemingway, Amy Keum, Candy Buckley, Larry Pine, Jennifer Kim, Matthew Maher, Tom Pecinka, and Alexander Sokovikov.

Shout! on Dec. 12 to Issue ‘Shaun the Sheep’ Series in a 7-Disc Blu-ray Set

Shout! Studios is releasing the complete “Shaun the Sheep” animated TV series in a seven-disc Blu-ray Disc set on Dec. 12.

The series, from Chicken Run creator Mossy Bottom Farm, will also be issued on DVD.

Season six of the show is now available to own digitally through such platforms as Amazon, Apple, Hulu and Google Play.

Shaun the Sheep: The Complete Series includes all 170 episodes, marking the first time seasons 5 and 6 are available on disc. The collection also includes “Shaun the Sheep: The Flight Before Christmas,” a half-hour holiday special, and over an hour of bonus material that include “Mossy Bottom Shorts,” “Championsheeps,” and the special “Shaun the Sheep: The Farmer’s Llamas.”

“Shaun the Sheep” is an award-winning series (Annecy Cristal, BAFTA, International Emmy Awards) known for its slapstick humor, distinctive look and strong, quirky characters. First appearing in Nick Park’s 1995 Academy Award-winning “Wallace & Gromit: A Close Shave,” Shaun then went on to star in his own series and several movies.